Tuesday Tips to Tattoo the Ball
Many Hits can come from the On Deck Circle Awareness
Many ball players zone out or try to impress people in the stands when in the on deck circle before their at-bat.
One thing I emphasize to ballplayers is that on deck circle time, before batting in games, is a valuable time when used correctly. Additionally, players should realize that the swing they take the most throughout the year is their swing, with no ball, for warm-ups and practice. When batters bat four times a game and spend two to three minutes in the on deck circle, they may take as many as fifty warm-up swings. When those swings are not done with a purpose, it is wasted time, as well as possibly reinforcing bad mechanical swings.
Tips so On Deck Circle Time is not wasted
- Observe the pitcher closely to know arm angle, release point, speed of fastball, off speed pitches
- Try to get in rhythm with the pitchers delivery, from the windup or stretch, whatever the case may be.
- Observe how the pitcher is pitching and trying to pitch the up-to-bat hitter. This may give players a clue to how they will get pitched.
Additional on deck circle tips success for
- Know what the pitcher’s “go to pitches” are, which are the pitches they throw when ahead in the count and behind in the count.
- Take practice swings to different imaginary pitch locations – most players groove one spot with their warm up swing. Grooving the swing to one spot is not conducive to hitting various pitches outside their groove.
- Know the game situation as is, and the possible game situation when they get up to bat. Surprise is usually bad for baseball execution, so to anticipate game situations and possible coaching decisions beforehand, is a sign of a good ballplayer.
Of course, observing many of these from the bench before arriving to the on deck circle is also good and a sign of a well-coached team. Finally, good coaches point many of these things out for players until they advance enough to do them on their own. Coaches also keep an eye on the next up hitter so they are focused on the game.